What to do When You’re Not Doing Well in a Class

Hi First Years!!

You just got your midterm back, it’s not the grade you were expecting, and you just know you’re not doing so good. What do you do? I’ve got some tips on how to bring your grade up, and how to make the best of your situation.

–Talk to your Professor

Go to your professor’s office hours and speak with them. If you aren’t available during their office hours, send them an e-mail. See the blog post by FYM Patrick about contacting your professor for more information! For example, if you didn’t do so great on the midterm the professor may be able to tell you that the final will be worth more and he/she may be able to help you prepare for the final. Maybe there will be a chance for extra credit that the professor will be bringing up in the next class, or maybe the professor could tell you what you did wrong on your midterm so you don’t do it again.

–Take Notes in Class

Make sure you’re taking notes in class! The best way to study for a final is to go over notes that you’ve taken, so if you’re not taking notes, or if your notes didn’t help for your midterm, talk with your professor about what’s important in class.

–Check the Syllabus.

How much is the exam worth? 15% of your grade? 20%? More? Look into the specifics on what you’ll final grade will consist of and make sure you’re doing well on everything else.

–Form a Study Group

Talk to a few people in your class and see if they’d like to get together to study! Seeing other perspectives can be a huge help when preparing for an exam, paper, or just preparing for class. If something is confusing to you, a classmate may understand it and be able to explain it. This also goes the other way, if you understand something you can share your knowledge! The study rooms in the library are a great place to meet and get work done.

–Make a Study Guide for your Final

Making a study guide is an amazing way to study! Not only does that mean you’ll be going over your notes, but you’ll be going over readings and compiling it all into one document to look over at a later date. Just making the study guide will help you study!

–Come to the FYE Office and Speak with a Student Success Coach

Feeling stressed? Don’t know if you can bring your grade up enough? Email or call the First Year Experience Office to make an appointment to speak with a Student Success coach (firstyear@salemstate.edu, (978) 542 – 2618), or just walk right in to our (Meier Hall 100A)! Student Success Coaches can help you feel better and give you more advice specific to your situation! They really care about you, and will try to help you as much as they can. If you’re not comfortable coming into the office, you can see if they will meet you somewhere else– like Dunks!

Remember that we at the FYE office are here to help you with whatever you need. We’re more than willing to sit with you and discuss whatever you’d like. Even if you just need someone to listen, we’re here for you:)

FYM Kaitlynn


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